Hello... I haven't been serious in while but since this is a journal, I felt I would write down some of my more somber thoughts...
Well, I've had a lot of family issues come up these past two weeks. And it has made me a bit melancholy about family and what it means to me. The first issue was the recent death of my grandfather or abuelo as I called him. He was my father's father and would have been 91 this coming September. His death was not a surprise because of his age and deteriorating health but it obviously still leaves an empty spot in my heart. He lived in Miami with my 86 year grandmother (abuela), who is now left to live alone. I can rest knowing that he died peacefully, without pain, in his sleep though and I am also comforted by the fact that I finally followed through on my promise and saw him last fall to celebrate his birthday. I felt I was able to see him and reinforce to him how much I cared for him. He was an amazing, strong, wonderful man that I only wish had been closer to me geographically. And even though I am not religious nor have I completely decided what happens to us after we die, I still feel that he is now in a better place where he has his full mobility back and that he his back with my father, his son, who passed away in 1994 whle I was a junior in college.
His death made me think about what little family I have left since I come from such a small family. My mother has only one sister and she is still in Cuba - I have never met my Aunt Gladys. I also never met my mother's parents. They passed away about a decade ago in Cuba. My father grew up an only child so as it stands now, my abuela is the only surviving member on that side of the family. I am losing my family and my heritage. All I have left is one grandmother, my mother, my aunt, 2 cousins and a sister. I also have a half-brother and 2 half-sisters but I never really knew them nor stay in touch with them. Out of this small list, 3 are in Cuba and have never met me. I have often taken family for granted but I can't any longer. I can't afford to. I hope I take this opportunity to make an effort to reach out a little more.
Along with these thoughts and reflections, I found out a couple days ago that my secondary family, my in-laws, have also gotten some bad news. So if you know me personally, please keep in your thoughts Kenny's grandfather, PaPa. He is struggling with some health issues and we hope he makes a positive decsion to take treatment. It's going to be a rough few months...
Hee, hee - I've got two Blogger converts! My friends Mel and Hanna have recently started their own blogs!! Welcome to this wonderful time-waster girls! Poor Melanie... she hasn't gotten ANY work done today but she sure has learned a thing or two about HTML! :D
Also - the profile page for the Old School CS Raves E-Group is up... you can find it here!
OK - I'm not in zodiac signs but the artwork is amazing (tasteful nudity)! Check out Body Arts, What's Your Horoscope...
This picture was used for a BBC article on the decision by the South African Roman Catholic bishops to reject the use of condoms. I don't know - it just drew my attention for it's aesthetic value. Yeah, I know, I'm weird.
This past weekend, Austin native Lance Armstrong won the Tour de France for the 3rd consecutive time and became the 1st American to do so!! Congratulations Lance, for showing the world what Texans are made of!
ABOVE: A serious yet hilarious and typical picture of me, circa 1979... (I loved the camera)
LEFT: 1980 Family Christmas Photo - I'm 7. My sister is almost 15. It's a little off center but oh well...
As promised... some old family pics... BELOW is just a wonderful shot of my mother on her honeymoon, Cuba, December 1964... She was a beautiful women when she was young!!
Hello... Spent a nice day out today. Saw the final performance of the Gilbert & Sullivan Society of Houston's 50th anniversary performance of The Pirates of Penzance. A fellow book group member, Paul, was a member of the chorus so it is always fun to see him on stage. Then we had dinner with family afterwards at Baba Yega. It's probably the last time I spend with my sister and her family before they make their final leg of their move out to Tallahassee...
Today (or should I say yesterday?) I went to Galveston Island with my older niece, my sister and her husband's father (Claire's grandfather). It was really hot (about 100 F?) and humid as usual but we survived. We started off at Moody Gardens and saw The Aquarium Pyramid as well as the special Dinosaur exhibit now showing (Claire loves dinos) then headed over to the Seawall for some running around in the water. Afterwards, we went to my friend Daniel's house to pick him up for dinner... We finished our day at a wonderful restuarant right on the water called Fisherman's Wharf. We even had a table witha view of the historic 1877 ship, The Elissa, whose home base is Galveston. A good time was had and I think I was able to avoid a nasty sunburn!
So here I sit now, at 12:45 AM, scanning in old family photos. My sister and I went through a box full of photos a few months back and there was some we both wanted so I am scanning them in before I hand over the ones she wanted to keep. There are some pretty goods ones in there so I'll post a couple in my next update. Well, back to scanning - I'm only halfway done! :P
Did you know that today in 1940, Bugs Bunny made his debut in the cartoon A Wild Hare? As a child, he was my favorite cartoon character so I had to pay him homage! Have a great Friday - the weekend is finally here!
Hee, hee - I got two new floaty pens recently from friends! Julian just sent me the one he bought in Minneapolis of the Walker Art Center and Zack just returned from vacation with a Yellowstone pen for me! I am almost up to 170! For those of you who don't already know, I collect floaty pens from around the world and will haggle everyone I know to look for them on their travels and bring me back any they come across. One of my goals is to eventually have at least one pen from each the American states (I am only halfway there).
One million mark Cubas rebellion - Fidel is still alive and kicking after over 40 years in power! Anyone check the "white sneakers" he was wearing though? I bet they were Nikes!
ARGH!!! I'm at work and one of my suppliers is playing politics and being extremely difficult!! My head hurts... This sucks. I hope my yoga class tonight will help relieve some of this stress.
Today I discovered the writer and diarist Anais Nin. Appropriate, isn't it, as I start my own journal? I am also interested in her writings because of her Spanish and Cuban experiences, two things that are close to me. Here is a quote from her:
"There is not one big cosmic meaning for all,
there is only the meaning we each give to our life,
an individual meaning, an individual plot,
like an individual novel, a book for each person."
-Introduction to The Diary of Anais Nin, 1931-1934
Worked on some minor updates to my website, Explore Europe! I moved all the picture galleries off and plan to just add a link to the photo albums on a separate site. By doing this, I saved myself 8 MB of space! Wow!! Instead of thumbnail galleries I will be adding reviews and sites to see for the various travel pages. Hopefully I'll get this done by the end of the month! Wish me luck!
I also need to work on updating the monthly book group site, Evan Texans Can Read. I need to finish the reviews for Snow Crash and Fight Club. In related news, I have been slacking on my reading. Lately my attention span has only been able to handle the weekly issues of Time but next month's book has managed to capture my interest! I am looking forward to reading it.
UGH! Bad day at work... lots of miscommunication and just bad vibes with the VP. Double ugh! When will this day be over?? 90 more minutes to go...
Isn't my Mom's new rottweiler puppy cute?? Her name is Opal and she is 8 weeks old.
Well - "date" with Kenny was postponed... had dinner with Scott & Kasey instead, who recently got married. It was nice to see them. Scott use to be our neighbor and we'd see him all the time but he moved in with Kasey when they got married so we don't see him as often. After dinner, Kenny and I went home and relaxed on the couch... ooh, comfy couch...
I'm trying to figure out the html for this thing so I can customize it a bit! Argh! :P
Well - I have been debating for several weeks now how much time I really do have for a blog but I am going to try it anyway. I've really enjoyed reading Erica's Blog and have been inspired.
Survived my sister's visit yesterday. Barely. Came into work a few hours late because I was so emotionally and physically drained. I hope to relieve some stress and go out on a date with my husband tonight. He loves to play pool and he always wants me to join him so I asked him out tonight. Maybe an hour or two of some much-needed and hard to get alone time will do us both some good.